Japan Toughens Penalties on Phone Use While Driving
Tokyo, Dec. 1 (Jiji Press)--Japan tightened regulations on Sunday on the use of mobile handsets including smartphones while driving, under amendments to the road traffic act and other laws.
Drivers of standard vehicles found using smartphones or mobile phones while driving will face a fine of 18,000 yen, a threefold increase from the previous levy.
The fine was raised from 7,000 yen to 25,000 yen for large vehicle drivers, from 6,000 to 15,000 yen for motorbike riders and from 5,000 yen to 12,000 yen for scooter riders.
The traffic penalty point rose from one to 3, with the point rising from 2 to 6 when the risk of accident is confirmed.
In case of a danger of traffic accident, criminal punishment will be imposed. An offender will face up to six years in prison or a fine of up to 100,000, compared with a fine of up to 50,000 yen previously.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]